Note to self on getting old:
The more you sneer
The more you pout
The more you purse your lips in disdain
The more you tut and tetch
The sadder you will be.
The smaller you make your mouth,
The smaller you make your heart.
The years are not kind to the jaw.
The lips sew themselves shut
The teeth clamp together
The voice dries to a reedy harrumph
The shoulders curl upwards
The chest caves in
The pelvis folds up
The body collapses
And your bright, strong face full of laughter and love
Becomes a briny old ball of lemon-juice misery.
Let that not be your fate.
Let your lips be elastic and your eyes be bright
Let your cheeks be as buoyant as helium balloons
Let your arms be ever lifted and your voice be a shout
Crying ‘Let today be forever and the night be my lover
And the world full of nonsense and joy.’